Fatality rate for self-driving cars 10X worse than human drivers; "We need to talk about the risks" | Phoenix New Times

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Worldwide, humans average 100 million miles of driving annually for each vehicle-related fatality, according to Clark Miller, associate professor and scientist at Arizona State University’s Global Institute of Sustainability.

As of March 18, Miller pointed out at a recent panel discussion at ASU, the ratio is now about 10 million miles annually per fatality for self-driving cars.

In other words, from the evidence we have so far, the average for self-driving cars is 10 times worse than for human drivers....

Columbia University Professor Hod Lipson, in his 2016 book, Driverless, with writer Melba Kurman, argues for the careful introduction of regulations or government guidance that might someday be comparable to the Federal Aviation Administration.

“A driverless license is a good start, but a significant amount more research and exploration of regulatory oversight is needed,” Lipson’s book states. “Ideally, the highest levels of government should adopt a proactive, rather than reactive, approach.”

Lipson suggests the creation of a Federal Autonomous Vehicle Agency, “similar to the FAA,” which would have the effect of advancing self-driving technology as well as promoting safety standards: “The AVA would be responsible for setting an aggressive and visionary strategy to make driverless cars a reality across all 50 states.”...

“My attitude has changed over the last 10 days [after the Arizona pedestrian fatality] ,” Maynard said. “We need to talk about the risks … I really haven’t seen people asking tough questions about what they want this to look like.”

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